New Jersey Train Museums

train museums nj

New Jersey is home to a number of train museums that showcase some of the state’s most historic locomotives. Whether you’re an experienced train buff or just want to learn more about the history of trains, there’s something for everyone in NJ.

Whippany Railway Museum, Morris County

For over 50 years, the Whippany Railway Museum has preserved and operated New Jersey’s rich railroad heritage. In fact, it’s one of the oldest operating railroad museums in the country. Its volunteer-run operation has a wide variety of train layouts, railroad artifacts, and historic railcars, which are all on display at this Morris County landmark.

The museum is open on Sundays from March through September. Admission is free.

Several times each week, the museum offers tours of its collection. These tours are led by the museum’s volunteers and are a must for any train buff.

You’ll get to ride in a real railroad caboose!

You can also tour a 1904 freight house that has an outstanding collection of artifacts related to the New Jersey railroads. This museum also hosts a number of special and seasonal events, including the Polar Express (select dates from Saturday, November 16 to Monday, December 30) and the Easter Bunny Express.

Northlandz Model Railroad, Flemington

Located just over an hour from NYC and Philadelphia, Northlandz is an interactive model railroad experience where children can walk the track, run the trains, and interact with thousands of buildings and dolls. The main building contains eight miles of track and up to 100 trains crisscrossing it, plus a 94 room dollhouse and an outdoor life-size train.

Paterson Museum, Paterson

The Paterson Museum is a city-owned and operated museum whose mission is to preserve and display the industrial history of Paterson. It was established in 1925 and moved to its current location in 1982. The museum features artifacts from local industries, a large mineral collection and a variety of exhibits.

United Railroad Historical Society, Whippany

Founded in 1904, the United Railroad Historical Society is a nonprofit organization that preserves and displays New Jersey’s rich railroad history. Its collection includes the largest collection of American-built standard gauge steam locomotives displayed in New Jersey. Visit to see one of the oldest steam locomotives in America, Southern Railway No. 385; a Texaco Fireless Cooker; and U.S. Army No. 4039, which is a relic of World War II.

Paterson Museum, 2 Market Street, Paterson

This museum, owned and maintained by the city of Paterson, is home to a unique collection of artifacts and exhibits that help tell the story of the history of the region. The museum is open to the public and offers guided tours for school and community groups by appointment.

Northlandz Model Railroad, Flemington

Located just over an hour away from NYC and Philadelphia, this unique model railroad experience is a hidden gem for train enthusiasts and non-enthusiasts alike. It is the world’s largest model railroad with up to 100 trains running at any given time crisscrossing over 8 miles of track!